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Bragging Rights!!! The Wire Bending CNC and the Patent Application - Page 5 — Parallax Forums

Bragging Rights!!! The Wire Bending CNC and the Patent Application

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  • LoopyBytelooseLoopyByteloose Posts: 12,537
    edited 2012-09-07 05:56
    Ah, yes.... Build a better mousetrap and the world will beat a pathway to your front door.

    Unfortunately, not all patents are for better mousetraps. The core of any business is Sales, and that is why the fastest path to the top of a company is usually through the Sales department.

    There are some items that do sell themselves, but if you want to seeking good help from people that are in it not-for-profit, the Southern Oregon Inventors Council has been around for quite a while and has no interest in creating fees or stealing your ownership. There are other similar organizations in most of the states in the USA.

    I suspect there are lots of ways to pull wire. Your device is handy, but with construction down it isn't going to be easy to sell 25,000 units even if you can produce that many in one day. You need to use Thomas Catalogue to locate electrical material distributors across the nation and to contact them directly. You might personally visit a few that are near you and get some real input into the demand.

    www.thomasnet.com/

    If you need stainless steel wire, let me know as I can get you all you could desire produced in South Korea. I have a friend of 18 years here in Taiwan whose brother represents a Korean stainless steel mill.

    BTW, "over-grown paper clip" is a rather disparaging slam -- not good form.
  • RsadeikaRsadeika Posts: 3,615
    edited 2012-09-07 06:04
    Acquire a starving patent attorney to work on a contingency.
    If he is starving, I doubt that he will be working on a contingency.

    So, now it is time to put on your salesman hat, and start to devote a 120% to selling your product. Usually this is where the downfall occurs, it is very rare to find the product creativity, and salesman qualities existing in the same person. And it also takes more than just pointing to the ever so clever way of doing something, and expecting it to sell itself. Even if you go the other route, have somebody market your product, you better be able to sell yourself first, and then your product. Stand in front of a mirror, and see if, in all honesty, you see a dynamo salesperson, because that is what it will take to get a new product off the ground.

    Good Luck
    Ray
  • idbruceidbruce Posts: 6,173
    edited 2012-09-07 06:15
    As mentioned and as it stands now, my patent has been read and my samples are in the hands of probably the largest manufacturer and distributor of electrical supplies in the world, and they have mentioned that they intend to do a market evaluation. If they like the idea well enough, I am sure they will want to own the patent, as compared to letting other manufacturers have access to it. PERIOD

    Hopefully this major corporation will see value in the patent of my "overgrown paperclip" that Mickster cannot see. :)
  • LoopyBytelooseLoopyByteloose Posts: 12,537
    edited 2012-09-07 06:31
    Well, since you own the wire bending machine and now have the know-how to DIY patents, other things will come. After all, Thomas Edison didn't patent just one thing. He took his light bulb, hired everyone that was is competition and patented everything he could get them to think up.

    Some good ideas are just niche markets, others are suitable for mass market. But nothing gets done without effort and a bit of a risk.

    Patent laywers tend to suck the life out of innovation at tens of thousand of dollars a pop. If you want a global patent, I have heard that one has to start with application in Japan first or it will never be fully recognized.
  • MicksterMickster Posts: 1,890
    edited 2012-09-07 06:41
    Well when I served my 4-year apprenticeship as an Industrial Electrician, I bent an awful lot of conduit and pulled an awful lot of wires through that conduit. All I can think about this "invention" is that it's a solution looking for a problem. We would stagger the wires at the fish tape end and wrap them with electrical tape to streamline them. Attaching a string to the group to allow for future wires to be run was a non-issue. Anyway, need to get back to writing this patent for my new motorcycle ashtray.

    Mickster
  • idbruceidbruce Posts: 6,173
    edited 2012-09-07 08:08
    Well when I served my 4-year apprenticeship as an Industrial Electrician, I bent an awful lot of conduit and pulled an awful lot of wires through that conduit. All I can think about this "invention" is that it's a solution looking for a problem. We would stagger the wires at the fish tape end and wrap them with electrical tape to streamline them. Attaching a string to the group to allow for future wires to be run was a non-issue.

    Apparently, once again, you lack knowledge that you profess. There are many conduits bent everyday that do not have wires pulled in by the contractor that bent the conduit. Strings are installed in these conduits by the contractor to allow future installation of wires and cables by some other company or contractor.
    Anyway, need to get back to writing this patent for my new motorcycle ashtray.

    Hey Mick, just use the tank!
  • PublisonPublison Posts: 12,135
    edited 2012-09-07 08:17
    idbruce wrote: »
    Hey Mick, just use the tank!

    THAT got a definite LOL here!

    Jim
  • idbruceidbruce Posts: 6,173
    edited 2012-09-07 08:35
    THAT got a definite LOL here!

    Jim, my comment was not intended to be funny, I was very serious and I thought it was an appropiate solution to his problem :)
  • mindrobotsmindrobots Posts: 6,506
    edited 2012-09-07 08:45
    I assumed Mickster's ashtray comment was a joke.

    How can you smoke on a motorcycle? if you do, doesn't the wind take care of the ashes? (how would you light a smoke, anyway at 60mph?)

    I obviously don't ride.
  • idbruceidbruce Posts: 6,173
    edited 2012-09-07 08:49
    @mindrobots

    He was obiously trying to imply that my patent was useless and without merit. However, if he was serious, I think the tank might be a better solution for him.
  • MicksterMickster Posts: 1,890
    edited 2012-09-07 09:17
    Ummm not a problem, Bruce...Why? I ride a Night-Rod (V-Rod)...I'll let you figure it out. Great bike, BTW. All the frames are made in Canton MI on my CNC bender :)


    Mickster
  • idbruceidbruce Posts: 6,173
    edited 2012-09-07 09:19
    Ummm not a problem, Bruce...Why? I ride a Night-Rod (V-Rod)...I'll let you figure it out. Great bike, BTW. All the frames are made in Canton MI on my CNC bender :smile:

    Good for you Mick, I wish you all the success you deserve.
  • prof_brainoprof_braino Posts: 4,312
    edited 2012-09-07 16:50
    I missed something, why don't you just start selling your clip directly to contractors?

    Seems to me you could suffer in comfort until one of the big boys buys it off you.
  • frank freedmanfrank freedman Posts: 1,854
    edited 2012-09-07 21:05
    Mickster wrote: »

    <clip>

    Then I suggest you read the entire thread where you will find not only my own patents but also a link to a video of my own real machine that actually makes fuel-injector lines for big-name automotive, 24/7
    Maybe YOU can point me to a link of Bruce's machine?

    Mickster

    </clip>

    So, tell us old, wise mickster, why the hell did you waste your time on patents given the "@+$#*#@$ that you dispense so freely in this forum?

    Just askin'

    FF
  • frank freedmanfrank freedman Posts: 1,854
    edited 2012-09-07 21:23
    idbruce wrote: »
    apparently, once again, you lack knowledge that you profess. There are many conduits bent everyday that do not have wires pulled in by the contractor that bent the conduit. Strings are installed in these conduits by the contractor to allow future installation of wires and cables by some other company or contractor.



    Hey mick, just use the tank!

    ddddddddoooooooooooohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  • idbruceidbruce Posts: 6,173
    edited 2012-09-08 08:11
    I missed something, why don't you just start selling your clip directly to contractors?

    Seems to me you could suffer in comfort until one of the big boys buys it off you.

    @prof_braino

    That is a fantastic idea, BUT....

    There is quite a bit of market research required for that type of endeavor. To be successful, I would have to know which electrical contractors are using large quantities of polyline (AKA pullstring). Acquiring that knowledge would be very time consuming and costly. However, I have been thinking about researching the major construction jobs going on in the US and finding out who holds the electrical contracts. Large construction jobs will probably require large amounts of pullstrings for fire systems, various alarms, data cables, etc...

    While working for a particular construction company, I once had access to software that listed all the major jobs going on in the USA, and it allowed you to supply bids. When the bidding was closed, it gave contact information to the company that received the contract. I believe that if I had access to that software now, I think I could start a successful direct marketing campaign.

    Of course that was approximately 15 years ago, and I can no longer remember the name of the software. I will have to do a little research to find similar software or perhaps contact my old employer to find out the software that he used.

    Bruce
  • MicksterMickster Posts: 1,890
    edited 2012-09-08 08:13
    I missed something, why don't you just start selling your clip directly to contractors?

    Seems to me you could suffer in comfort until one of the big boys buys it off you.
  • MicksterMickster Posts: 1,890
    edited 2012-09-08 08:16
    .................
  • idbruceidbruce Posts: 6,173
    edited 2012-09-08 08:39
    I knew it the minute that I found it. My employer would always say "Check the Dodge Reports"

    http://www.construction.com/dodge/
  • Dave HeinDave Hein Posts: 6,336
    edited 2012-09-08 08:48
    Bruce,

    I don't agree with the way Mickster made his comments, but he does raise some valid points. Sometimes it's best to thank someone for their constructive criticism, and ignore nasty remarks.

    I like your invention, but it seems like you may have a few hurdles to overcome in trying to sell it to a big manufacturer. I suggest you make a few hundred of them, and give them away to as many electrical contractors as you can find in your area. Tell them to give it a try, and then contact them after a few weeks to get their feedback on it. This way you'll find out how well accepted your product is. If they really like it they'll tell their friends, and you'll start getting orders from other contractors who want some for themselves.

    After a few weeks, you may find that there is some problem that you hadn't realized. Maybe they get stuck under conditions you hadn't thought about. Or you might find that they always have to go check the other the other end anyhow, so the self-releasing feature isn't that important to them. Or maybe they'll love it the way it is. In any event, you'll have data on actual usage that will help to promote your invention to a big manufacturer.

    Dave
  • prof_brainoprof_braino Posts: 4,312
    edited 2012-09-08 08:50
    idbruce wrote: »
    That is a fantastic idea, BUT....

    ... quite a bit of market research required .... To be successful,...Acquiring that knowledge would be very time consuming and costly. ...

    No BUT's about it dude! So what if it takes time? If it take 5 years and you start now, you'll be done in 5 years. If you wait 15 years to start, it'll take 20 years.
    It only costs time, and you spend that every day just breathing.

    If you feel ill-equipped to do that part of the job, check out PS-1 (pumping station 1) mailing list on yahoo groups, and ask Sasha about Maker-biz. There's at least 25 guys doing what you need (bringing a product to market) and looking for folks that do what you did (creating a product).

    Or if you trust me, I'll do it myself. I know a bunch of guys that are looking for something to do, and this is what they do when their doing it. PM me if interested. Let's get off our dead @$$ and make you rich! Folks need this, let's make it easy to find you.

    @Mickster, and anybody else: I don't know if bruce ever posted a video, but I will tell you that I personal examined the machine and saw it in operation. It produces and packages the part (the process is actually two machines). I saw the part operate, it exactly addresses the need for which it was designed. The whole set up actually quite cool, especially when you get to see it operate up close in person. Nothing against any other machine or anybody else's work, but he's got something here. The finer points of patents are no longer relevant to this discussion.
  • idbruceidbruce Posts: 6,173
    edited 2012-09-08 09:12
    @Dave Hein

    I have enough wire on hand to produce 40,000 samples (2,000 pkgs. of 20). I have previously produced samples for companies, only to discover that I gave them to the wrong companies. I don't mind giving out samples, but giving them to the wrong companies can be quite costly.
    After a few weeks, you may find that there is some problem that you hadn't realized. Maybe they get stuck under conditions you hadn't thought about. Or you might find that they always have to go check the other the other end anyhow, so the self-releasing feature isn't that important to them. Or maybe they'll love it the way it is. In any event, you'll have data on actual usage that will help to promote your invention to a big manufacturer.

    As mentioned earlier in this thread and as discovered through testing, my product is not the magic bullet and it has limitations, but it is still quite useful and can be used to save a lot of money, providing it is used within it's limitations. I do believe that a large portion of the limitations can be overcome, but only by applying money to the problem.

    @prof_braino

    Thanks for the testimonial, I truly appreciate that :)
  • idbruceidbruce Posts: 6,173
    edited 2012-09-08 10:47
    Now this is what I am talking about!

    If I can get samples in front of the electrical contractor that wins this bid (http://dodgeprojects.construction.com/Clinic-Medical-Office_stcVVproductId101498669VVviewprod.htm), or others like this one, then I have a very good chance of making it on my own.
  • NWCCTVNWCCTV Posts: 3,629
    edited 2012-09-08 11:12
    Yea, The problem is those people are always trying to "Sell" a list that is available for free. Check out your local/state laws on Open Bid Contracts. Also, the Chamber Of Commerce is a good place to go. I myself would go through the phone book/Internet for your local electrical contractors and low voltage contractors and just walk in or send out a free sample with a Patent number clearly marked on them.
  • idbruceidbruce Posts: 6,173
    edited 2012-09-08 11:43
    @NWCCTV
    Yea, The problem is those people are always trying to "Sell" a list that is available for free. Check out your local/state laws on Open Bid Contracts. Also, the Chamber Of Commerce is a good place to go. I myself would go through the phone book/Internet for your local electrical contractors and low voltage contractors and just walk in or send out a free sample with a Patent number clearly marked on them.

    A "list" is exactly what I need to be efficient. If I could get a contact list of all the electrical contractors and the amount of polyline that they consume per year, I would have no problems making money. I would know exactly where my market is. However, I am certain that this very detailed request could only be supplied the various supply houses such as: Graybar, All-Phase, CEW, Englewood, etc...., and I highly doubt that they would supply such a list, and if they did, it would be very costly. On the other hand, if I knew who was awarded big contracts across the nation, it would be a pretty safe bet that they would be using a large amount of polyline to complete large projects, and definitely worth my investment to send them some samples. Door to door sales in my locality is just not going to cut the mustard. Seeking out potential customers is very time and money consuming, whereas with the type of service shown above, it would cut out a good deal of leg work and risk. And besides, the price sounds pretty reasonable for the amount of reward that I could receive.

    As for sending out samples that are clearly marked, you will soon see, that I have that area well covered.

    Bruce

    EDIT: Additionally, when I start making money, providing I hold onto the patent, future packaging will include monetary rewards leading to the recovery of damages suffered from infringement. At which point, I believe the electrical contractors will be very careful about illegally manufacturing and using my patented product.
  • potatoheadpotatohead Posts: 10,216
    edited 2012-09-08 11:58
    Bruce,

    You've made the investment and can now produce something of value. Of course, that's half the equation as we all well know.

    What you need now is to start moving the product --a bootstrap essentially. The time you invested in developing the means and methods of production was very expensive time. The time you invest in marketing and sales is also very expensive time. You valued the former low enough to warrant making the investment to produce things, consider valuing the latter in the same way.

    That means, starting right now, you do the research. I've been involved with boot strapping efforts of this kind, and it's not technically hard work. It is tedious work, and depending on what one finds interesting, boring work. What usually motivates people to do that market research and prospecting work is dollars.

    I strongly suggest the following:

    1. Identify every possible use case for your product. For each use case, develop your value proposition. Value propositions are simple things. Some examples are:

    -cost reduction. In this case, it's either a time or money or both argument. Somebody buys your product, and they get a return on that purchase in terms of their time, which basically is money to them.

    -quality. In this case, they buy your product and they get a return in terms of repeatability on their product or process, or fewer warranty claims, or perhaps reduced service / maintenance costs or increased product life. For some products, sadly, a longer life is not a compelling business event. Know that.

    -time to market / time to completion. In this case, they buy your product and it helps them get theirs to market sooner. Time to market is often an extremely compelling value proposition, simply because failure to reach market is extremely expensive, as you are experiencing right now.

    There are others.

    I cannot under-emphasize the importance of this step. You know your product has value, but nobody else does. You need to put that value in basic business terms and you need to do so in ways they can identify with. Every feature of your product delivers some benefit. Just delivering a benefit IS NOT ENOUGH. Each benefit needs to be linked to a compelling event, or business reality that establishes the value of that benefit, and that is what you need to communicate so that they can very easily see how using your product will give them a return on their investment in your product.

    This is not a technical discussion AT ALL. Ideally, you can dry run this stuff on ordinary people in the target field and they get the VALUE of it cold. How it works is secondary. What they get for using it is primary. It's important to realize that there is a barrier to nearly anything. One must purchase it, learn about it, invest in skill surrounding it, maintain a supply of it, etc... Being able to demonstrate high value opens the door to people wanting to make that investment. People will see they can get a lot of value first, generally though this is not universally true, then they vet it technically to see whether or not it's snake oil. Lead with value. Lead with value. Lead with value.

    You may find this work unpleasant. I often do. It is however, work that will lead to $$$, which is why people do it. :)

    2. For each use case / value proposition set, and it should be a set as more than one value proposition may well apply to a given use case, you need to identify who is best aligned with said use case. Further, you need to break this down into segments. (AKA Segmenting your market) Segments are:

    Size of Segment
    -contractors
    -small business / proprietors
    -mid sized firms
    -major players

    Type of Segment
    -electrical contracting
    -builders
    -service people

    etc...

    Make a matrix of these, and I like to use Excel for this purpose, so that you can start to link up your use cases and value statements to your targets.

    3. Sort your segments by your personal barrier to entry, and then sort them by potential revenue back to you, AND very importantly, the use case alignment with their business needs.

    The goal here is to not just shot gun everybody, diluting your message to the point of impotence which wastes your resources, but to focus down hard on one segment. This segment is the one that has the best use case alignment, in other words the one that you deliver the most value to, and it's the segment that is the least expensive for you to market to, and it's the segment that has the highest potential return, so that the risk you take stands a fair shot at getting paid off, ideally with some profit so that you can continue to reinvest and build your business.

    4. Once you have identified this segment, it's time to produce collateral. You need a basic web site, brochures, business cards, and all that other stuff that marks you as somebody significant, not that smart guy in a garage. Nothing wrong with the smart guy in the garage, mind you, most of us are! But, that's a negative in the majority of cases you encounter boot strapping, unless a segment / niche is favorable to that kind of thing. Most aren't. What they don't know won't hurt them either. Know that too.

    Ideally, you would produce a short sales video, training video, if required and ideally those are one and the same for a great, simple, highly useful product.

    You absolutely need to fire up PowerPoint and craft your message. This needs to be short, compelling, clear as hell, and it needs to be nearly all business. If you are having to explain your product for more than a slide or two, you've not got the message clarity down, nor do you have your value proposition sufficiently realized in your own mind. Ideally, a single sentence can articulate why somebody wants this thing, and another single sentence articulates what they get for having it, done, next.

    If I were you, I would develop this stuff to the best of your ability, then spend a few $$$ having somebody who knows design polish it up for you, leaving you with editable assets you can re-purpose as needed and as you learn about your target segment. And you will learn about your target segment, so plan on that learning and refactor it into your research and product launch efforts from the beginning. Everybody does, almost nobody nails it cold right out of the gate.

    5. Now you are ready to get names, buy lists, etc...

    Having done this work, you can actually make use of an SIC code list. You can buy these regionally, nationally, whatever. They range from a few hundred dollars to thousands depending on the size of list and the scope and nature of companies and or people on said list. Remember your segments done earlier? This is why! You can focus down, be effective, close the deals and make the money on smaller, targeted investments, keeping your risks incremental along the way, and ideally your returns incremental too, so you've got $$$ to operate on.

    6. However you get your target data, you research it. Visit the company web sites, and profile them in general ways. Take that profile and align it with your use case / value proposition so that you can message properly. Does it make sense? Is it short, sweet, hard hitting and to the point? If not, continue until it is. Continue until you can state all of this cold, to anyone, anytime, anywhere.

    7. Now you are ready to prospect. Having looked at your target company data, and having thought about this crap so much you hate it, it's time now to decide how to approach people. Approaching people really sucks. It sucks, because you will get rejected a lot. But, you do it, because of the $$$ you will get when you aren't rejected. And it sucks. Did I tell you yet that it sucks?

    Have a friend? Anyone you know that can do that work? The selling work? Strongly consider getting help here, unless you must just do it for the need to bootstrap yourself up to hiring somebody like that. Often that's the case, and frankly, if you can't get out there and look people in the eye and ask them for the business, you very likely won't have any success bootstrapping your product into the market.

    Can't help you there. Either you go for it personally, or you get help. What I can tell you is that I was running very lean at the time I did this, but I believed in my product, and it came down to talking to other people and asking them to buy the product. After the first two successes, this was much easier, though unpleasant no matter what. It's still unpleasant. Always will be for me.

    8. Ways to prospect.

    You probably don't want to just cold call people. I wouldn't. Nobody does. Consider direct mail, e-mail, post cards, and such, and very carefully select your targets. You will have to contact them a few times too, and in various ways.

    There is the phone. (brutal, but really cheap)
    There is mail, and web, etc.... be very careful with your targeting or you spend a lot of money you don't have.

    Conferences, and other places where interested prospects gather.

    Recruiters may know folks you can talk to for cross promotional purposes.

    Doing that first, gives you something to call ON. This helps a lot. Just asking to talk to them is hard. Asking them if they got your info, or free sample, or whatever is a whole lot easier. Know that.

    9. Get meetings.

    You have to talk to people, and you have to ask them to give you a shot. You also mentioned wanting to know some metrics, such as how much of something they use per year. These early meetings are GOLD, because they will tell you precisely that, and you can get them to put it into business terms too, which is very hard info to find anywhere else.

    10. Throughout all of that, be ready to deliver, and manage expectations to be the right expectations, because your first business is the most important business. It can't go bad, be late, short, whatever. That first business pays you to get more business, grow, have a reference account, testimonials, and all sorts of other stuff.

    ***Put this here for general interest. Been there done that. Ugly, but useful stuff. Enjoy, or not. :)

    Edit: The first product I ever sold was software. It was CAD software that made electrical shapes and precision sheet metal layout quick and easy. The steps above took me about three months to successfully execute after about three months of software development.

    Wrote the software on a $20 computer, no joke, bought from a Value Village that met the minimum requirements for authoring the software. Made a lot of money over about two years. $15K or so in licenses in my region. I changed career direction, and needed to focus on that, so it ended there, but it was a great experience, and I was helped by some people who really knew this stuff.

    (Yes, I got a much better computer with the first batch of dollars, so that the higher end features could be further developed and tested.)

    Anyway, that's the content of the post. That is precisely what I did, and had it been a product that saw larger segments, I may well have continued doing it. As it was, the segments were small, and I got the most bang for the buck just doing business in my region, then moving on as CAD technology moved on too, rendering many product features moot in 5 years.

    That 5 years was an important lesson in time to market too. I developed, marketed and sold in the prime time. Demand was high, I got good license fees and it wasn't too hard. Had I developed and then spent a year or two figuring out how to market and get it out there, I would have easily made half or less. Do not underestimate that effect. It's real.

    ***I would think the reward for infringement message through very, very carefully. You do not want to come off as hostile, or risky to work with, or overly demanding or controlling. Those are all product acceptance barriers that you do not need right now, IMHO. Might be a good thing, then again, it might not. That is a risk case.

    Your biggest risk is not moving any of the product. A secondary one is being infringed on.

    Let me put it this way, say you market this stuff and move very little product, yet somebody infringes. Compare that problem to moving lots of product and being infringed on.

    In which case do you have ability to act?

    I'm not saying don't do it. I am saying think how you do that through very, very carefully, and ideally focus test that on a few people who would be users of and decision makers about the product. You may find their reactions considerably different than you anticipate them to be. A misalignment like that can be extremely expensive. FYI
  • potatoheadpotatohead Posts: 10,216
    edited 2012-09-08 14:55
    I'll add one more thing.

    Why do this work, when the idea is to get somebody else to like it enough to do the work and just pay for the patent / machine licensing / royalties?

    Having skin in the game, that's why. One potential consideration they will have is product support, updates, legalities, etc... Doing the work above is all about being able to properly position the product relative to other products, and most importantly to them, other opportunities they will be considering.

    One thing people fail to recognize is they are always considering other opportunities and the big competition isn't whether or not the product offering does what it says on the tin, delivering the value it says it does, but whether or not that whole equation is even worth bothering with in light of other products / technology / opportunities.

    "Putting skin in the game" helps to lower your barrier to entry Bruce. They may consider doing market research, and then again, they may not, and that's an opportunity cost for them, weighed against the other stuff they do. Now, if you can bring them market research, ideally products in use, etc... now your opportunity just got a lot leaner for them. It's leaner because there is now some vetting they don't have to do, and there is the very real impact of it actually doing stuff as opposed to theoretically doing stuff.

    And in the mind of a business person, it's theoretical until some dollars are moving. They don't care. It's all fun 'n games, until people are spending real money.

    Having gotten through that investment, if they are having to do it, they then would also still weigh that opportunity against others, or seek potential alternatives. You know they will. Wouldn't you? I would. Most folks will.

    It is in your best interest to pave that road to the highest extent possible, and it's buying down risk too. While you wait for others to decide to act, your time to market window is slipping. If you really have nailed a niche that's worth a ton of money, right now, somewhere, somebody is working to meet that demand or opportunity, and tech overall is evolving with other products and or market changes closing that window in significant ways.

    That's it for me. Just putting it out there. Would love to see your hard work pay off Bruce. Good luck.
  • MicksterMickster Posts: 1,890
    edited 2012-09-09 03:18
    potatohead wrote: »
    Just delivering a benefit IS NOT ENOUGH. Each benefit needs to be linked to a compelling event, or business reality that establishes the value of that benefit, and that is what you need to communicate so that they can very easily see how using your product will give them a return on their investment in your product.

    Thank you

    Mickster
  • potatoheadpotatohead Posts: 10,216
    edited 2012-09-09 18:44
    You are welcome, though I will temper that with my extreme reluctance to even put material like that here. It's relevant and truthful, but not really fun. At least I don't think it's fun, but it's necessary when business is being considered as opposed to doing cool stuff.

    To be really clear, I contributed that because I would really like to see Bruce get some return on the time he's invested in this product. He showed up here, ready to do battle with the tech, and got it done, from what I can tell.

    It's really worth noting that good tech often goes unrealized due to failure to also do the work to get people to understand the value of it, beyond cool. The biggest misconception is the whole thing being self-evident. Us engineering minded people see it, and it's not tough to get from there to some benefit and value. That's kind of what we do.

    Sadly, most of the people who control the dollars simply do not have that skill to the same degree, and worse, they have a skepticism about value, simply because they spend a lot of time dealing in it, if nothing else. Things aren't self evident. There are always risks and potential rewards, and the word "potential" is where the rubber hits the road on these things.

    Bruce wrote: "If they like it well enough..."

    That, right there is why you do the work I wrote about here. A big part of the solution being successful, whatever it is, happens to be making damn sure there can be no mistakes on "liking it well enough!" And that conflict between having to do that work, which appears mundane, boring, etc... and the very real need for the people who matter to like it enough to see what the engineer sees inherently, having solved the problem, is what I wrote to.

    No insults, sides taken or other ill intent implied, nor intended. I simply saw a value add to the discussion, nothing more. :) Carry on folks, and good luck Bruce.

    Edit: One other thought struck me on this thing. Metrics. When I did the CAD software product, the value of the time savings was questioned regularly. I did a benchmark --actually a few of them to establish that it was quicker with the product, and by how much under various scenarios, which really helped people identify whether or not they were in the sweet spot to benefit from the thing.

    Being software, I gave it to them on a permenant license and then set it all up and helped them get through some tough projects. Total win, but it was a time and product commit on my part. Ended up with real data and testimonials that were worth a whole lot, and did some tweaks too, worth just as much. Recommended.

    If it were me, I would totally find somebody doing a project and just apply the product to get those metrics and use case data, right along with the real world input prof_braino mentioned. That's really good information that is likely not in the hands of those "who might like it enough."
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